Things That Matter

China Is Ready To Outpace The U.S. In Tequila Consumption

CREDIT: CCTV AMERICA / YOUTUBE

Whether it’s birthdays or Fridays, tequila is the perfect drink for all occasions.

So it should come as no surprise that a drink as well-liked as is quickly becoming one of China’s most favorite liquors, and in fact their rapid consumption of the booze is on pace to rival that of the U.S. by 2020. This comes after China’s recent relaxation of its import laws involving tequila. This turn of events came as an act of diplomacy between the Chinese President Xi Jinping and Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto. These days, tequila is pretty much everywhere in China, but before the deal was signed by both presidents, tequila was hard to find.

Because of the high levels of methanol in Tequila, the drink wasn’t able to get past China’s custom’s laws. While small amounts were available in the country, it was only available to a privileged few, and it probably wasn’t even real tequila?. Officially, authentic tequila can only be manufactured in the small region of Mexico named, oddly enough, Tequila. Thanks to efforts of the presidents, people in China can now drink the stuff whenever the urge hits them. While China might one day become the biggest consumer of tequila, I’ll be doing my part to keep the U.S. in that race for first place.

READ: 11 Reasons Why We Have A Love / Hate Relationship With Tequila

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This Mexican Hotel Will Give You Unlimited Tequila And Let You Sleep Inside A Tequila Barrel

Culture

This Mexican Hotel Will Give You Unlimited Tequila And Let You Sleep Inside A Tequila Barrel

Marnbannon / Instagram

Listen up tequila lovers – we’ve found your new HQ. And it’s time we spread the word. 

Forget fancy vineyard buggy tours, or brewery visits. Mexico has really upped the game on boozy vacations. 

Because, guys. GUYS. We’ve found a boutique hotel in Mexico that lets you sleep inside a massive tequila barrel. 

No, but really. 

How’s a weekend surrounded by an unlimited supply of tequila, sound?

Welcome to the Matices Hotel de Barricas, Mexico, where guests can eat, sleep, drink and dream tequila. 

It’s the only hotel in the world that’s set on a tequila farm and distillery, and that offers bungalows shaped like barrels amongst agave (I mean… that is pretty niche). 

And we’re obsessed.

I repeat: they’re set among vast fields of agave plants.

Not only will you be able to sleep in a barrel that mimics the ones they use to brew tequila, you’ll be able to IMMERSE yourself in the tequila-universe for however long you’re there for (how’s a lifetime sound?).

Here are all the things you never knew you needed to know about how to sleep in tequila barrels.

It’s set in the pueblo magico of… Tequila, Mexico.

It only seems good ‘n fair that this hotel is based smack bang in the heart of Tequila, Jalisco. 

Spoiler alert – Tequila is the tequila capital of the world. It’s become something of a tourist hotspot for tequila fans hoping to learn more about this golden elixir. After all, agave plantations in the area have been churning out the good stuff since the 16th century! 

And we can’t get over how beautiful the grounds are. 

Credit: marnbannon / Instagram

Open the large front-door of your personal barrel, and you’ll be greeted with rows upon rows of blue agave – the stuff tequila is brewed from.

Ok, so maybe it’s not a traditional ‘detox’ vacation, the hotel is located far from the bustle of the city.

The whole place is owned by a world-renowned distillery called Hacienda Tequilera La Cofradía. The hotel itself only opened in 2017, but word is spreading like wildfire!

And it’s easy to see why. 

 Four walls? Boring. Corners? Yawn. 

Credit: maticeshoteldebarricas / Instagram

The hotel offers 22 wooden barrel rooms with a range of suites – from the ‘Aged King’ and ‘Silver King’, to the ‘Extra-Aged King’. 

Each barrel room can fit up to two guests and comes with a king-sized bed, rainshower air-conditioning, fridge and more. There are curved glass windows on the ceiling and some cute, kitsch wall paintings that give off some very Wild West vibes. 

Sure, it’s no Ritz but hey – we’d pick unlimited tequila and rustic charm over fancy bar soap, most days. 

The hotel also offers ordinary rooms for those travellers who, for some unfathomable reason, might not want to spend the night pretending to be your favorite liquor. 

I mean, do you really love tequila if you don’t want to…  be tequila? 

I mean, it’s basically a boozy hobbit hole for adults.

Credit: haciendasycason / Instagram

Tequila is aged in a barrel and comes out better. Be the tequila. 

Rest in here, come out e l e v a t e d. 

The grounds are also pretty freaking cool.

Credit: Tequilacofradia.com

That picture above is their La Taberna del Cofrade – a restaurant and bar that’s 4.5 meters (15 feet) deep underground! 

Other cool spots around the hotel grounds include their The La Cofradía Tequila Site Museum that lays out their impressive achievements and history across 5 exhibition halls. There’s also an ‘Art in Fire Ceramic Factory’ where the ceramic structures and containers for tequila are made. 

There’s also a very cool aging room where the tequila is stored in protective oak barrels until it’s ready for glugging. 

And naturally, there’s a tequila shop where you can pick out some bottles to bring home to those who so foolishly didn’t join you on the best vacation ever. 

You’ll also be able to get up-close and intimate with how the tequila is made.

After all, the hotel is connected to the La Cofradia tequila factory and is just a quick stroll away. 

You’ll be able to stoke the fires of your tequila obsession with a fascinating guided tequila tour of the factory where you’ll learn all about tequila farming and distillation. 

The distillery is said to use some pretty impressive modern distillation techniques. However, they use some of their same old recipes in order to make some of the world’s best tequila. 

Wanna get hands-on? You can help out the farmers working in the field, design ceramic containers and tequila bottles, or even distil your own tequila from scratch! 

Okay sure, but when’s the drinking start?

Credit: zori.ramos1173 / Instagram

We thought you’d never ask. According to reviews, you’ll be greeted with a welcome drink on arrival – tequila shots, naturally. 

You’ll also get the chance to do some free taste testing. We’d definitely recommend jumping every chance to drink from the source – Casa Cofradia is responsible for some pretty awesome tequilas. 

They include the spicy Agave Loco, and Astral, a tequila repped by the former ‘Most Interesting Man in the World’, Jonathan Goldsmith. 

Best of all – you can drink and go straight to bed. If emerging, slightly hungover from a barrel, doesn’t sound like fun we don’t know what does. 

And minus the regrets. No regrets here. 

Lastly – you’ll also be a stone’s throw from the lovely Tequila township.

There’s a handy free shuttle that goes between the hotel and Tequila town itself – conveniently rich in waterfalls, volcanoes and pre-hispanic ruins.

If you find some sober moments and are in the mood for adventure, feel free to jump on a horse, explore the area on a bike or dirt bike, or simply hike the rolling hills of this gorgeously old-school region of Mexico. 

So go on – live your best life. And by that we mean, spend a night in an oversized barrel. You owe it to yourself. 

I mean, just leaving this here… 

Credit: tequilacofradia.com

Because if you haven’t slept in a Tequila barrel in a field of majestic agave plants, have you ever truly lived? 

READ: Here Are Some Of The Tequila Brands Keeping The Beloved Art Of Creating The Liquor Alive And Well

Elon Musk Still Wants To Release His Teslaquila But He Doesn’t Seem To Be Making It Happen

Culture

Elon Musk Still Wants To Release His Teslaquila But He Doesn’t Seem To Be Making It Happen

@elonmusk / Twitter

Love it or hate him, there is no denying that tech billionaire Elon Musk is a real disrupter. He is one of the minds behind the groundbreaking online transactions system PayPal, among other successful digital ventures. He has also revolutionized the car industry with his clean Tesla models and is in the run to be one of the power players in the private space industry with his project SpaceX.

So what is next for this mogul who is famous for his sometimes overwhelming frankness and for almost always getting his way? Musk is the man who famously said: “When something is important enough, you do it even if the odds are not in your favor” and “I could either watch it happen or be a part of it”. So the story you are about to read does not fall out of character for this man born in Pretoria, South Africa, in 1971, and who graduated from the University of Pennsylvania.

Read on to find out what the new goal is for this modern-day Citizen Kane. Sign with us: “Tequila! nana nara na na na na”. 

This might sound like an April Fool’s joke, but it isn’t: Elon Musk actually wants to release a tequila-like drink.

Credit: @elonmusk / Twitter

On October 2018 the technology mogul announced that he was developing Teslaquila, a drink derived 100% from Blue Agave, the plant that tequila comes from. We mean, the word “Teslaquila” is adorable and smart, but isn’t tequila supposed to be produced in Mexico only? Isn’t making a tequila that has nothing to do with Mexico a sort of cultural appropriation? Tequila, es importante decirlo, has a Denomination of Origin, which means that it can only be produced in the region of Tequila, Mexico. Problems ahead for Elon and his company, as the tequila industry is a tightly knit group that has resisted production outside of Mexico for decades.

And of course, social media wasn’t taking it too seriously. Musk in the tequila business, seriously?

Credit: mememumma2 / Instagram

Memes started to come out about Elon’s new project. Fake bottle designs such as this one, featuring a gringo having a siesta by his Tesla, soon started to populate social media. We all had a good laugh about it, but when Musk sets his mind on something things usually are set in motion.

Hey, Elon, shake those maracas, muchacho!

Credit: t35l_4 / Instagram

Some fake bottles were more on brand, such as this one of Elon’s silhouette while shaking a pair of maracas and being serenaded by a mariachi band. A little too much gringo-cinco-de-mayouuuu for us. 

Although some of Elon Musk’s fanboys couldn’t wait to crack a Teslaquila bottle open!

Credit: spiritshunters / Instagram

Musk has legions of hardcore fans, particularly men who venerate him like a god. Of course, the idea of having a Teslaquila-infused fratboy party really got their juices flowing, and some even created artistic odes to Elon Musk’s new great idea. Online transactions, cars, the new space age… tequila! 

Here is the approximate design, pretty much in the same high tech style of the rest of the Tesla emporium

Credit: Screen-Shot-2018-10-12-at-10.22.52-AM. Digital image. Tech Crunch.

Elon even released this approximate design for the bottle. It looks high tech and kind of cool, to be honest. Will we ever see those on shelves? First Elon needs to solve a “little” problem. 

But they couldn’t so they are involved in a trademark dispute, because tequila has to be produced in a specific part of Mexico.

Credit: maxresdefault. Digital image. My Tesla Life

The Tequila Regulatory Council made it very clear in November 2018 that Musk’s Teslaquila would not fly, even if the billionaire vowed to fight “Big Tequila.” As reported by SyndiGate Media, the council asserted that: “If Tesla wants to make Teslaquila viable as a tequila it would have to associate itself with an authorized tequila producer, comply with certain standards and request authorization from Mexico`s Industrial Property Institute. Otherwise, it would be making unauthorized use of the denomination of origin for tequila”. Ouch, that must have hurt the ego of a man who is famous for almost always getting his way. 

They have files to register the trademark but it is useless without the rights to call it tequila.

Credit: Screen-Shot-2018-10-12-at-1.03.38-PM. Digital image. Electreck

Thus is the actual attempt by Musk to take Teslaquila off the ground. Not so quick, mister. It seems, however, that the Musk will be a good boy and follow the rules. In November 2018 The Toronto Sun published: “A Tesla spokesperson said the CRT’s worries are unfounded and that Teslaquila will comply with all the organization’s necessary standards and requirements. The spokesperson added that Teslaquila will be made in the Mexican state of Jalisco, and Tesla expects to get the CRT’s approval for the beverage”. So did the Tequila Chamber and journalists jump the gun in anticipation of a long and costly legal fight. 

But as Musk found out, making real tequila is not that simple, legally or otherwise. Everything is at a standstill.

Credit: tesla-mexico-header. Digital image. VinePair

The authorities have been clear. As reported by CE Noticias Financieras on March 28, 2019, no brands, including Teslaquila, can use the word tequila because this is reserved to the alcoholic beverage derived from blue agave produced in the Tequila region, in the Mexican state of Jalisco. “We are going to have, without any doubt, all the possibility of being able to take them out of the market and take corresponding legal actions. This recognition will give much greater certainty to the industry. I practically believe that it makes tequila one of the most protected products in Europe and in Latin America, “explained Ramón González Figueroa, president of the Tequila Regulatory Chamber, to CE Noticias Financieras. This Chamber has been successful in cases against “fake tequila” in countries like Japan and Chile, where Mariachi Tequila was defeated in the courts. “Teslaquila” is too close to “Tequila” to be considered a different product.

Musk is ready for a fight, or so he says and we are still waiting to see that fight.

Credit: godemperormusk / Instagram

Elon is a legendary underdog and he loves a big fight. One of his mottos is: “Persistence is very important. You should not give up unless you are forced to give up”. He has vowed to fight what he calls “Big Tequila”. We think that this attitude is a bit colonial and, honestly, a little disrespectful. He has it all and wants more, even if it is in detriment of tequila producers who actually live and work in… you guessed… a little place called Tequila! Is this what we would call cultural appropriation? Maybe. 

In the meantime, other celebrities North of the Border have successfully announced their plans to launch tequila brands.

Credit: @TeslaHab / Twitter

Recently, Breaking Bad protagonists Aaron Paul and Bryan Craston teased a reunion, which had fans of their iconic TV show drooling at the possibility of a new adventure. But nah, they are touring Mexico looking for the perfect conditions to produce and release their own tequila. It must really sting for Musk to see other people doing it the right way and getting to make their tequila dreams a reality. Obviously, Musk fans brought up the still plausible possibility of Teslaquila. Hey, Elon, we got a slogan for you: “Teslaquila: a drink that will electrify you!”

READ: Elon Musk’s ‘Teslaquila’ Drink Faces Legal Trouble From Mexican Tequila Industry

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